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Mayor Charlie Hales

City of Portland Mayor Charlie Hales

Phone: 503-823-4120

1221 SW 4th Avenue, Room 340, Portland, OR 97204

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Portland Development Commission

Dawson Park in North Portland

Portland is one of the most globally competitive, equitable, desirable and healthy cities to live in worldwide. However, quality of life in Portland varies, and there is more that needs to be accomplished to improve the development of our neighborhoods. Mayor Charlie Hales, with the Portland Development Commission (PDC), has committed to ensure that Portland becomes an equitable and livable city for everyone. The PDC is Portland’s urban renewal and economic development agency. The Mayor and PDC work to implement projects that will create economic growth and opportunity in Portland by stimulating job creation, encouraging broad economic prosperity, and fostering great places to live. This year PDC completed its five-year strategic plan to guide its future efforts. 

Mayor’s Top Goals for PDC                     `          

  • Create Healthy, Complete Neighborhoods throughout Portland: Ensuring neighborhoods have access to public goods and services — such as parks, community spaces, transportation — and that they feel safe, clean and inspire among their residents.
  • Access to High Quality Employment for Portland Residents: Creating inclusive economic growth by supporting traded sector business growth, access to new domestic and foreign markets, and providing quality employment opportunities for Portland residents across all geographical and cultural communities.  
  • Foster Wealth Creation within Communities of Color and Low Income Neighborhoods: Increasing the diversity in high-growth firms, ensuring local businesses succeed and grow, and providing opportunities for property within communities of color and low-income neighborhoods.
  • Form 21st Century Civic Networks, Institution and Partnerships: Strengthening and redefining networks, institutions and partnerships that address the most pressing barriers to prosperity in education, workforce, neighborhood affordability, and infrastructure to create effective solutions.  
  • Operate an Equitable, Innovative and Financially Sustainable Agency: Modeling the values of PDC’s work in how it operates as an agency to maintain its ability to be an agent of positive change in the city of Portland. 

PDC, the Mayor and partners are working to achieve these goals through implementation of:


What is Urban Renewal?

Urban Renewal is a redevelopment and finance program that works to improve and redevelop specific communities in poor conditions, due to physical deterioration, economic stagnation, and unsafe or poor planning. This specific community neighborhoods are known as Urban Renewal Areas*. Each Urban Renewal Area has a course of action plan for its specific needs. The Portland Development Commission and the Mayor use the Urban Renewal as a tool to create and fund projects that would benefit the community and meet their needs in those areas.

Mayor Charlie Hales believes in using the Urban Renewal as a tool to create shared prosperity and livable neighborhoods. When the mayor took office in 2013, he asked the PDC, who directly oversees this system, to re-examine the boundaries, duration, and purpose of all the Urban Renewal Areas to ensure its efficiency. On April 1, 2015, the Mayor successfully passed through City Council the proposed Urban Renewal Area amendments, which put $800 million in assessed value back on the tax rolls

Projects of Urban Renewal in Portland. 

*Urban Renewal Areas include the following neighborhoods: Portions of Arbor Lodge, Boise, Bridgeton, Eliot, Humboldt, Kenton, King, Overlook, Piedmont, Portsmouth, Concordia, East Columbia, Friends of Cathedral Park, St. Johns, University Park, Woodlawn, Vernon.

Page by Mariana Garcia | 2015